This paper describes the design and construction of an ocean dock that will be built in Spring 1991 in Nome, Alaska. The dock will be constructed near the offshore end of a rock causeway that extends about 2,700 feet (823 m) into the ocean. The project features the opencell dock concept, which was developed by the writers in 1981 and used on about 40 docks and bridge abutments since that time. The open-cell dock will consist of interlocking sheet pile cells filled with granular fill, heavy-duty energy-absorbing fenders on the dock face, and pipe bollards to secure vessels.

The open-cell dock concept is particularly suited for use in Nome and other Arctic locations because it is inexpensive, relatively simple and fast to construct, makes use of locally available fill materials, and is highly resistant to ice forces. The Nome dock will be constructed through a large hole in the approximate four-foot-thick arctic pack ice which should provide total protection against storm waves during construction. Some other logical uses for the open-cell concept in the arctic include drilling islands, bridge piers and abutments, erosion control structures, retaining walls, marine breasting dolphins, and harbor entrance channels.

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